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4 Reasons to Buy A Home This Summer

4 Reasons to Buy A Home This Summer

Here are four reasons to consider buying today instead of waiting.

1. Prices Will Continue to Rise

CoreLogic’s latest U.S. Home Price Insights reports that home prices have appreciated by 3.7% over the last 12 months. The same report predicts that prices will continue to increase at a rate of 4.8% over the next year.

Home values will continue to appreciate. Waiting may no longer makes sense.

2. Mortgage Interest Rates Are Projected to Increase

Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey shows that interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage have started to level off around 4.3%. Most experts predict that rates will rise over the next 12 months. The Mortgage Bankers Association, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the National Association of Realtors are in unison, projecting rates will increase by this time next year.

An increase in rates will impact YOUR monthly mortgage payment. A year from now, your housing expense will increase if a mortgage is necessary to buy your next home.

3. Either Way, You Are Paying a Mortgage

Some renters have not yet purchased a home because they are uncomfortable taking on the obligation of a mortgage. Everyone should realize that unless you are living with your parents rent-free, you are paying a mortgage – either yours or your landlord’s.

As an owner, your mortgage payment is a form of ‘forced savings’ which allows you to have equity in your home that you can tap into later in life. As a renter, you guarantee your landlord is the person with that equity.

Are you ready to put your housing cost to work for you?

4. It’s Time to Move On with Your Life

The ‘cost’ of a home is determined by two major components: the price of the home and the current mortgage rate. It appears that both are on the rise.

But what if they weren’t? Would you wait?

Examine the actual reason you are buying and decide if it is worth waiting. Whether you want to have a great place for your children to grow up, greater safety for your family, or you just want to have control over renovations, now could be the time to buy.

Bottom Line

If the right thing for you and your family is to purchase a home this year, buying sooner rather than later could lead to substantial savings.

 

Written By KCM Crew

Source:https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2019/06/03/4-reasons-to-buy-a-home-this-summer/

June 4, 2019   No Comments

To-Dos: Your June Home Checklist

Summer officially begins June 21 this year, but why wait until then to get into the summer spirit? Get a jump-start by prepping your home and garden for warm weather, setting up the perfect drip-dry spot for beach towels, reorganizing the kitchen (hello, smoothie bar) and more. These 21 to-dos cover all the bases, so you can enjoy the season to the fullest.

19. Clean gutters and downspouts. If you did not get your gutters cleaned in spring, be sure to get this essential task checked off your list as soon as possible. Leaf- and debris-clogged gutters can lead to leaks and siding damage with summer storms.

Learn how to clean your gutters

20. Schedule major outdoor projects. Whether you are dreaming of a new patio or need to replace a deck, don’t delay booking a landscape architect or contractor for your projects. Their schedules tend to fill up quickly in the summer.

21. Catch up on projects and maintenance. No one is perfect, and chances are there are a few home-maintenance projects you’ve been meaning tackle. Why not make June the month to get caught up?

Written By Laura Gaskill
Source: https://www.houzz.com/magazine/to-dos-your-june-home-checklist-stsetivw-vs~64799711

June 3, 2019   No Comments

Garage Organization: A Chore No More In 5 Easy Steps

When Spring rolls around, you may find what was once a home for your cars has now become a landfill for everything you own but don’t use. It’s important to define different spaces of your house, and the garage is no exception: it’s just as functional as any other part of the home. However, it’s meant to store your car and tools, not your Christmas tree. Therefore, it’s best to solve the problem once and for all with a little garage organization that’ll help keep things nice and tidy for the future. Follow our 5 easy steps to get the job done quickly and painlessly and enjoy your garage once again.

1. Plan of Attack

Don’t enter alone. And use the buddy system—if for no other reason than you may get overwhelmed and lost in your own sea of debris. Friends, family, and the kids can all lend a hand to get the job done quicker and to help keep you on track: it’s easy to get distracted rooting through the objects of your past.

The first goal of any garage organization is to create more floor space, so that’s where you should begin as well. Get all the knick-knacks, the holiday decorations, and any other indoor-related storage out of there and into the attic. This area is for outdoor items only. Always keep this objective in mind: it’ll help you decide what stays and what goes.

2. Divide and Conquer

Give each helper a section to cover. This should help the garage organization run smoother. And don’t be clingy. If you haven’t used something in over a year, or if you forgot it even existed, it’s time to say goodbye. Give your stuff to charities, thrift stores, or maybe even make a trip to the dump. Or, better yet, make a separate pile for a future garage sale, allowing you to reap all the awards of your excavation. (However, don’t procrastinate on this chore either. It’s easy to say you’ll have a garage sale and not follow through so as to keep putting off the inevitable.) Then, divide up the remaining possessions into categories—sports items, seasonal décor, gardening tools, car maintenance, etc.—to help with the next step.

3. Get Vertical

Once everything is cleaned and categorized, now it’s time to rearrange. The best way to store your things is to make use of your vertical space.

  • Get a pegboard for your tools.
  • Put up some shelves for boxes.
  • Heavy-duty hooks are great for shovels and rakes.
  • Buy a magnetic strip for stray metal items, such as steel rulers or chisels.

If you have bikes, skis, or ladders, put them overhead in the rafters (or if you have a drywall ceiling, once again, heavy-duty hooks are great for hanging these heavy-duty items).

Remember that a garage is mainly used to store or work on your car or other vehicles so make sure you clear enough space to make this possible. Garage car lifts provide a great way for you to store a vehicle whilst still giving you floor space to move around in. You can get 2 post lifts which make it easy to work on your car and 4 post lifts which allow you to store 2 vehicles in one space.

4. Compartmentalize

Once you have as much as you can off the floor, it’s now time to find additional storage. The easiest answer to this dilemma is a garage organizer.

  • A multiple tier shelving unit is great for storing paint or varnishes.
  • A cabinetry system for miscellaneous items is always handy.
  • Maybe buy several Rubbermaid baskets to hang on the wall to help separate the recycling.
  • Buy a crank to roll up that hose.
  • Use garbage ties or bungee cords to keep your extension cords in line.

Whatever the need, investing in some form of garage organizer helps to maintain the floor space you’ve just created.

5. Items Big and Small Don’t forget the little things.

If you save glass baby-food jars, clear film canisters, or milk cartons (to be cut in half), you’ll now be able to store smaller items, such as nails, screws, or tacks. If these small containers aren’t see through, they can also be easily labeled with masking tape. Another alternative garage organizer is an inexpensive tackle box to help contain the confusion. But what if it’s your bigger items that are getting in the way? What if it’s the necessary tools, such as snow blowers, lawn mowers, or edgers creating the clutter? Then consider building an extra shed in the backyard or a lean-to against the outside of the garage in order to produce additional square footage.

Don’t Let It Happen Again

The main thing to keep in mind is never let it get to this point again. If you take these steps, you should be able to keep up with your garage organization in the future. This is not to say that you won’t have some occasional maintenance—some sweeping, scrubbing, or washing. But by simply taking the time to arrange the space, at least you’ll no longer dread entering into it.

 

Written By

Source: https://realtytimes.com/consumeradvice/homeownersadvice/item/1019636-garage-organization-a-chore-no-more-in-5-easy-steps?rtmpage=

May 16, 2019   No Comments

What is Really Happening with Home Prices?

What is Really Happening with Home Prices?

Home values have softened over the last twelve months. We are no longer seeing 6-7% annual appreciation levels for the national housing market. The current numbers are closer to 4%. Some have suggested that year-over-year appreciation levels could fall to 3% or less this year.

However, a stronger-than-expected economy and a good spring housing market have changed some opinions. Some analysts are now predicting that home value appreciation may begin to increase as we move forward.

Here are three examples:

Mark Fleming, Chief Economist of First American

“Data on the movement of unadjusted house prices during the early spring home-buying season won’t be available for a few more months, but it’s quite likely that price appreciation will accelerate again.”

CoreLogic’s April “Home Price Insights

“Home prices nationwide, including distressed sales, increased year over year by 3.7% in March 2019 compared with March 2018…The CoreLogic HPI Forecast indicates that home prices will increase by 4.8% on a year-over-year basis from March 2019 to March 2020.”

Pulsenomics’ Quarterly “Home Price Expectation Survey”

  • The 2018 4th Quarter survey called for 3.8% appreciation for 2019.
  • The 2019 1st Quarter survey raised the appreciation projection for this year to 4.3%.

Bottom Line

Price appreciation has slowed over the past year. However, a strong economy and a good housing market have many experts thinking that home values might re-accelerate moderately throughout the rest of this year.

 

Written by KCM Crew

Source: https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2019/05/16/what-is-really-happening-with-home-prices/

May 16, 2019   No Comments

Why Access Is One of the Most Important Factors in Getting Your House Sold!

Why Access Is One of the Most Important Factors in Getting Your House Sold!

So, you’ve decided to sell your house. You’ve hired a real estate professional to help you through the entire process, and they have asked you what level of access you want to provide to your potential buyers.

There are four elements to a quality listing. At the top of the list is access, followed by condition, financing, and price. There are many levels of access that you can provide to your agent so that he or she can show your home.

Here are five levels of access that you can give to buyers, along with a brief description:

  1. Lockbox on the Door – this allows buyers the ability to see the home as soon as they are aware of the listing, or at their convenience.
  2. Providing a Key to the Home – although the buyer’s agent may need to stop by an office to pick up the key, there is little delay in being able to show the home.
  3. Open Access with a Phone Call – the seller allows showings with just a phone call’s notice.
  4. By Appointment Only (example: 48-Hour Notice) – Many buyers who are relocating for a new career or promotion start working in that area prior to purchasing their home. They often like to take advantage of free time during business hours (such as their lunch break) to view potential homes. Because of this, they may not be able to plan their availability far in advance or may be unable to wait 48 hours to see the house.
  5. Limited Access (example: the home is only available on Mondays or Tuesdays at 2 pm or for only a couple of hours a day) – This is the most difficult way to be able to show your house to potential buyers.

With more competition coming to the market this spring, access can make or break your ability to get the price you are looking for, or even sell your house at all.

 

Written by KCM Crew

Source: https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2019/05/06/why-access-is-one-of-the-most-important-factors-in-getting-your-house-sold/

May 13, 2019   No Comments

What Would Make You Sell Your House?

What Would Make You Sell Your House?

There are many reasons why a homeowner decides to sell their house and move. The latest Generational Trends Report from the National Association of Realtors asked recent home sellers to share their reason for moving.

The younger the respondents, the more likely their top response centered around needing a larger home (ages 29 to 53). Relocating for a job was the top reason for those ages 54 to 63 and the second most popular response for those under 53. The chart below shows the breakdown for these two reasons.

What Would Make You Sell Your House? | Keeping Current Matters

For homeowners over the age of 64, wanting to be closer to friends and family served as the top motivator to move. Downsizing to a smaller home or moving due to retirement came in as a close second and third.

What Would Make You Sell Your House? | Keeping Current Matters

Have you outgrown your current house? Are you a homeowner who can relate to wanting to be closer to family and friends? Is your house becoming a burden to clean now that the kids have moved out?

Bottom Line

Contact a local real estate professional who can help set you on the path to selling your current house and finding the home that fits your needs, today!

 

Written By KCM Crew

Source: https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2019/04/30/what-would-make-you-sell-your-house/

May 10, 2019   No Comments

Tips For Redecorating While On A Budget

Most homeowners have a desire to decorate in a manner that suits personal tastes while also being visually appealing. All those home magazines make it look so easy, but can also come with steep prices. When you are limited to a budget that’s somewhat smaller, you can still achieve the look you desire without breaking the bank.

Reuse

Before you start buying new furniture, bedding, and fixtures that will quickly eat through your budget, start by taking an inventory of what you already have. Think about ways that things can be reused. Simple furniture pieces can be painted or even just have the hardware changed out that will change the way a piece looks.

Many types of furniture can serve a different purpose. An unused dining table can become a desk. That old sofa table can be used as a mobile bar if wheels are added. Even a broken dresser can be salvaged and transformed.

Simple Appearances

Bigger is not always better. Sometimes a few simple changes can make a big impact, with minimal expense. Updating paint colors or just adding an accent wall is one way. You can also change out throw rugs and light fixtures. A small thing, like changing lamp shades or the glass covers on your ceiling fans or overhead lighting, can have a big visual impact as well.

Add covers to pillows and duvets to bedspreads. But what is a duvet? Think of the duvet like a pillow case for bedspreads. You can put an existing bedspread inside the duvet and create an entirely different look. Duvets and pillow covers can be purchased in a variety of patterns and colors, but you could also make your own if you want something more custom.

Thrifty Shopping

If you still plan to make some purchases, consider used pieces. Second-hand or thrift stores are often great places to buy décor items without spending a fortune. Wholesale, liquidation, and salvage places can also help save some money. Remember to consider possible alternate uses for items as well.

Keep your eyes open for things that people are trying to sell, too. Visit yard sales and flea markets. You can find a wide variety of items that people are selling for low prices. Swap meets are also good places to locate what you might need, while giving you the opportunity to get rid of something that no longer suits your tastes or needs.

Artwork

An alternative to pricey reprints, or even more expensive originals, is to create your own artwork to display. Try your skill at painting or decoupage. Frame your child’s latest art piece. You can even find free artwork to print and use at home. Spruce up some old wooden frames. Things like foiling and sponging can help you turn drab frames into decorative displays.

One at a Time

The most important thing to remember is to take it one step at a time. Try not to redecorate every room at the same time. You may need to divide your budget into chunks for each room that you want to redecorate. If you go room by room, you may find that you have some money left over that can be used for other rooms. By going one room at a time, you can avoid getting overwhelmed because you have taken on too much at once.

There are numerous options for redecorating on a budget, regardless of how small that budget might be. In your redecorating efforts, you can make huge changes just as easily as you can make small ones, both impacting the final result of a room. In the end, your home can be a display of the things you enjoy in an atmosphere that best suits you.

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Source: https://realtytimes.com/consumeradvice/homeownersadvice/item/1018475-tips-for-redecorating-while-on-a-budget?rtmpage=null

April 23, 2019   No Comments

6 Ways to Update the Look of Your Bathroom Without Doing a Full Reno

The average cost of a midrange bathroom renovation is more than $20,000. If you kick that up to the “upscale” level, it’s almost $65,000. Yikes! Luckily, there are lots of little changes you can make in the bathroom to make it feel new again—or at least less old. They range in price from the cost of a family outing to the movies (with popcorn), to the cost of a couple of airline tickets to Hawaii (during a really good sale).

Go frameless

It’s not cheap to convert an outdated shower to something more updated. Frameless glass will give you the sleek look you want, but be prepared to spend a good thousand bucks for the glass and the installation.

But add frames here

Frames around your mirrors give the space a more finished look. Companies like Mirrormate offer a custom solution that allows you to choose from tons of finishes and have the frame made to the size of your mirror. Of course, you could save a bunch of money by doing it yourself with some molding and a miter saw.

Paint it

You can completely change the look of your bathroom by slathering a fresh coat of paint over tired cabinets. Brush on a couple of coats of white paint over that chipped and dingy dark wood (but be sure to fill in those chips first!) and you’ll be amazed at how great your space can look.

Add some jewelry

Cabinet hardware can take boring, old cabinets and give them a little sparkle. Don’t be afraid to go bold or do something a little different. When you go to sell your home, you can always change them out for something more neutral for minimal cost and in a matter of minutes. This template will make installation easy.

Change out the faucets

You don’t have to get a whole new vanity to give you space a newish feel. Swapping out old faucets for something a little fancier will give the bathroom a lift. Do yourself a favor and take a picture, and measurements, of the existing faucet to take with you when you go shopping. Ask a salesperson to help you match the size and configuration so you don’t have to create any new holes in your bathroom countertop during installation.

Get new lighting

Builder grade is builder blah. For as little as about $100 (less if you catch a great sale!), you could replace your boring light fixture with something that’s really illuminating. It’s not a top-to-toe reno, but little details like this are sure to make you smile.

 

Written by Jaymi Naciri

Source: https://realtytimes.com/consumeradvice/homeownersadvice/item/1026645-6-ways-to-update-the-look-of-your-bathroom-without-doing-a-full-reno?rtmpage=

April 9, 2019   No Comments

15 Ideas for Home Projects on a Budget

Here’s a list of simple projects you can tackle to improve the look (and value) of your home.

Projects Under $100

1. Rearrange Furniture. Pull furniture away from the walls and position it at new, more inviting angles. You’ll change the look and dimension of your room.

2. Paint Walls. Choose one wall to paint in an accent color. Select a hue that’s already a part of the décor, one that complements and highlights your pieces.

3. Get Plenty of Greens. Lush broad-leafed plants are easy to maintain indoors and add some life to any room. If you don’t have a green thumb, opt for silk plants instead.

4. Accent Floors. A new rug is the perfect accent. Look for one that has colors that reflects your décor, and then angle it under a coffee table or dining room table.

5. Frame It. Use multiple frames that are of a similar style to create a framed picture collage on the wall. If frames don’t match, faux finish them for a complete look. . Lighting dictates the mood of a room. Mix and match lamp bases and shades to create new looks. Looking for another bright idea? Add recessed lighting.

6. Light Up Your Room.

7. Go Faux. Create a whole new look with faux finishing. Washing, leafing, marbling and stripping can be used to change walls or make furniture look fresh.

8. Update Cabinets. New hardware can transform a kitchen. Select matching sets of knobs and pulls to completely change the look and feel of your cabinets.

9. Wallpaper. Wallpaper doesn’t need to go wall-to-wall. Use it with paint to accent borders or choose a single wall to express your style.

Projects Under $500

10. Update Fixtures. New fittings, a fresh vanity and new toilet can completely change the appearance of your bathroom. Choose sets that work well together.

11. Add Moulding. Crown moulding adds a touch of luxury. To install it yourself, buy extra moulding and practice your miter cuts before beginning.

12. Update Flooring. New flooring gives a room a boost from the bottom. Try a natural-looking wood laminate. It’s simple to install and yields extraordinary results.

13. Install a fan. A large, decorative ceiling fan with a light fixture can brighten a room and create a comfortable climate
that you control at the touch of a button.

14. Organize Closets. Less clutter will make your entire home feel more spacious. Maximize storage with new shelving and wire organizers so everything is neat.

15. Care For Your Landscape. Add new hedges in the front, trees in the back and flowers that complement your home’s exterior. Little outdoor projects like these can really make you feel more settled in.

These ideas are provided as a service from Lowe’s, the Original Home Improvement Warehouse. Lowe’s assumes no liability for omissions, errors or the outcome of any project. The reader must always exercise reasonable caution, follow current codes and regulations that may apply, and is urged to consult with a licensed professional if in doubt about any procedures. Please read our terms of use.

 

Written By Lowes

Source: https://realtytimes.com/consumeradvice/homeownersadvice/item/1025609-15-ideas-for-home-projects-on-a-budget?rtmpage=

 

March 13, 2019   No Comments

How to Decorate a Small Living Room

Though all small spaces present design challenges, the living room can be especially tricky as it is where you probably spend the most time and entertain guests as well. How do you strike a balance between making the room feel as spacious as possible while also squeezing in extra seating? What furniture should you choose, and where do you put it? These design tips will help you make the most of your space.
Written By Laura Gaskill
Source: https://www.houzz.com/magazine/how-to-design-and-lay-out-a-small-living-room-stsetivw-vs~29346160

March 11, 2019   No Comments